SMB Direct with Emulex

A while a go i was involved in a project were the customer wanted to deploy a 2 node Scale out file server with storage spaces on Windows Server 2012 R2. Since this was my first actual storage spaces and scale out file server deployment (besides a training and testing it in a lab with vm’s) i ran in to some issue’s and problems.

First of all there is a lot of stuff on the internet that is not always entirely true for all scenarios. Settings or test results that are used and reported are not necessarily true in your environment. For example DCB/PFC/QOS settings with Mellanox RoCe adapters are different than with Emulex RoCe adapters. And even with Emulex and HP or Fujitsu branded Emulex cards configuration is not the same. This could be because the vendors don’t know it exactly either and are still struggling with their drivers, firmware and settings, I don’t know. But it’s makes it pretty tough to get it all right. And as I said before, this is the first implementation I did, so I am not an expert on this either, so feel very free to give feedback if needed.

This Technet article describes several does and don’ts with SMB and RDMA. A lot of info and configurations are also available on Jose Barreto’s blog for RDMA and Mellanox RoCe adapters. But since there is very little info with Emulex, I started this blog to write and share my findings.

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Windows Mobile 10 build 10581

Today I received the new Windows Mobile 10 build 10581 from the fast ring Insider Preview. For me there were a couple of things that were really bad in de last couple of builds. In the previous builds you were not able to set the data usage limit on a monthly schedule. After saving nothing … Read more

System Center 2016 VMM Logical Switch Improvements

Over the last month I had some time to play around with Windows Server 2016 TP3 and VMM 2016 TP3. There were some nice improvements in the logical switch section that makes our job a bit more easy.

Back in VMM 2012 R2 you could create a logical switch with uplink profiles and classifications that you can use for all hosts and then add the virtual switch per host. Then you also have to create all virtual nics also on a per host bases. That can be a lot of work and creates room for error and name mismatches.

Now in VMM 2016 you can create you’re VNic’s in the Logical Switch object.

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ADFS Federations Service rename with Azure Pack as Relying Party Trust

A week ago I was confronted to an issue with ADFS with Forms Based Authentication(FBA) and Windows Azure Pack.

Problem

The environment was setup several months ago for a Proof of Concept of Windows Azure Pack and only working with ADFS and Windows Authentication because there was no requirement to used FBA and there was also no Web Application Proxy involved. All was working fine but the customer decided to setup FBA and a web application proxy. Unfortunately, the web application proxy was not working and keeps prompting the FBA login page.

After several hours of troubleshooting the issue was drilled down to a problem with the FBA on the ADFS server. But why was Windows Authentication working and FBA not. To exclude possible Windows Azure Pack/relying pary issue’s I started testing with the https://auth-azure.domain.com/adfs/ls/IdpInitiatedSignon.aspx page.

Eventually it turned out that the Federations Service FQDN had changed. From https://auth.domain.com to https://auth-azure.domain.com. The rename was not done correctly and since I had a lot of trouble figuring it out with some colleague’s i decided to write a blog about it.

Solution

So when renaming the ADFS FQDN from https://auth.domain.com to https://auth-azure.domain.com the SPN was forgotten for the ADFS Service account. The SPN was left on http/auth.domain.org and needed to be changed to http/auth-azure.domain.org.

After this was fixed, I still received logon screens on the FBA page and could not login. Next problem, the Token-Signing and Token-Decrypting certificates were incorrect. Since there are lots of blogs discussing how to update the Token Certificates in ADFS I will not discuss this but I renewed the Token-Signing en Token-Decrypting certificates. Restarted the ADFS service

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SCVMM 2012 R2 UR5 Bare metal deploy downloading wrong Operating System VHDX

Last week I ran into an issue with SCVMM and Bare metal deploying Hyper-V hosts. During testing I was deploying several HP blades with the same Physical Computer Profile. But some hosts had the Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 OS, which was the one I configured in the Physical Computer Profile and others had the Windows Server 2012 R2 OS.
After recreating the .vhdx file the problem seemed to be gone, but it returned. During the deployment of de host in the WinPE mode I pressed Shift+F10 to open a command prompt and opened the VMMAgentPE.exe.log file to view any error’s. There I discovered it was downloading the wrong VHDX file.